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$2,771
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
99
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, September 18 2015 2:00 PM UTC +00:00
$2,771
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
99
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, September 18 2015 2:00 PM UTC +00:00

About

About this project

THE PROBLEM

The issue is that currently, the fire service has no lighting devices on their ladders. When firefighters climb to the top of a dark roof or into a smokey room, they can't see where they are stepping. When you can't see where you are stepping, you step on stuff. When you step on stuff, you twist your ankle or break your leg. When you break your leg, the city has to pay for it. When the city has to pay for it, our taxes go up. Don't let our taxes go up. Help us help firefighters everywhere; make Fireground Injury Reduction Equipment (F.I.R.E) lights a reality.

THE STATS

There is a real problem with firefighter injuries on the fireground. In 2013, there were over 13,000 injuries related to ladder activities totaling over $500 million in taxpayer money. The issue is two fold: departing a ladder onto a dark uneven roof and the ability to locate a ladder quickly in an evacuation. In the last decade, firefighters sustained over 100,000 non-life threatening injuries, and an average of two lives were lost every year due to not being able to locate a ladder quickly enough to evacuate a building.

Even a simple sprained ankle can cost cities tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Even a simple sprained ankle can cost cities tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
13,000 ladder related injuries totaling over $500,000 in 2013 alone.
13,000 ladder related injuries totaling over $500,000 in 2013 alone.

Even a simple sprained ankle can cost a city over $100,000. Not only does the city have to pay the medical bills of the injured firefighter, but also the firefighter's paid time off. In addition, there is the money paid to have another firefighter come in and do overtime to cover the shift of the injured individual. As if the monetary cost is not enough, the crew integrity will also suffer. Imagine that you are used to going into burning buildings with the same crew. You all know each other's strengths and how the others will react in certain situations. One day, someone gets injured and now you have a different person with you who isn't familiar with how your crew works. The pace must and will slow down, which, in a situation when seconds count, can cost lives.

THE SOLUTION

KXAN News Story.

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Community Impact Magazine article.  Click to see full article.
Community Impact Magazine article. Click to see full article.
       

Firefighter interviews.

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F.I.R.E. Lights is the answer and an easy one at that. It solves many of the problems associated with ladder operations. When you are surrounded by trucks with bright lights, wearing multiple layers of plastic face masks, in smoke, and getting sprayed with water, visibility is obviously reduced. Now you combine that with the adrenalin rush of going into a raging fire and you can see why finding your ladder quickly to evacuate yourself or a victim could be immensely difficult. F.I.R.E. Lights makes that task easy and painless. Even with a wet scratched face piece, looking through smoke and water mist, the ladder is obvious in its placement. This leads to fewer injuries, quicker response times and more lives saved.

F.I.R.E. Light prototype attached to a 24 foot extension ladder.
F.I.R.E. Light prototype attached to a 24 foot extension ladder.

REWARDS

Make sure to look at all the rewards at the bottom of page so you get exactly what you want.  

Scroll down to the bottom for more reward photos.
Scroll down to the bottom for more reward photos.

 F.I.R.E. LIGHTS BODY DESIGN

     The existing end cap design does not have lights and is inherently structurally weak, as evidenced by the high failure rate at the leg to body joint. By creating a bevel that feeds into the legs with a radius, we have increased the leg strength by over 300%. This means that ladders are not out of service as often to get repaired. When the units are out of service, they are not protecting the city and the cost totals up in both time and money:

New end cap = Time to drive ladder to shop (about 1-2 hrs) + Time to replace cap (about 0.5 hrs) + Time to get back to station and back in service (about 1-2 hrs). That's a total of 2.5 - 4.5 hours!

Take those hours multiplied by 4 guys on a truck, 2-3 techs at shops and fuel to get there, and you realize that what seems like a simple failure just cost the city close to $1000 in lost wages. Not to mention, the zone that truck protects was left without their primary truck, reducing response times to the entire area leaving the public unprotected for hours.

We increased the leg to body strength by adding a round edge increasing the surface contact at the joint.
We increased the leg to body strength by adding a round edge increasing the surface contact at the joint.

WINDOW PUNCH RIBBON

The sharp edge seen above allows firefighters to use the FIRE Light to punch a window out quickly and easily without damaging the light or ladder.  (printed plastic prototype)
The sharp edge seen above allows firefighters to use the FIRE Light to punch a window out quickly and easily without damaging the light or ladder. (printed plastic prototype)

      The window punch ribbon turns the tip of the ladder into a glass breaking tool. The firefighter will no longer have to waste time and energy carrying multiple tools to a window, breaking it, climbing back down the ladder to drop off the tools and climbing back up the ladder to get in the window. Now, firefighters have the ability to use the window punch built into F.I.R.E. Lights to break the window and gain access to the building in one step. This saves nearly 1 minute getting into the house. If you were in a house that was burning down, wouldn't you want the firefighters getting to you 1 minute sooner?

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BEACON LIGHTS

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Final product strip using much brighter CREE LED's
Final product strip using much brighter CREE LED's

   The beacon lights allow the ladder to pose as an exit sign, helping firefighters in a room or on a roof locate the ladder more quickly. These lights have a variable strobe that can be set in frequency by the end user so that individual fire stations can have their own unique strobe. The LED's seen in the video above are 4 lumen prototypes. The final assemblies will have 6 LED's with an intensity of 30 lumens.  The amber color was chosen in conjunction with CREE engineers due to its superior smoke penetrating properties.  

DEPARTURE LIGHTS

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       As you can see above, the departure lights help light the area near the ladder. The lights seen in the image above are our prototype lights so they are different colors and deliver a very narrow beam. Where these LED's have a beam pattern of 50 degrees, the final assemblies have a beam pattern of 140 degrees which creates an abundance of light in the departure area. These LED's are only 6 lumens and still broadcast usable light nearly 40 feet from the ladder. The lights used in the final assemblies will be 50 lumens or nearly 9 times brighter. Even with the brighter lights, total runtime on a single battery is in excess of 7 hours.

ORIGINAL DRAWING, SCHEMATIC, PROTOTYPES

      We began this project a little over two years ago. Since then we have been through a few different iterations of the F.I.R.E. Light. It started years ago with an idea while I was sitting on the couch in a cast with pins in my leg and slowly blossomed. Once I started my first company, Stout Performance, I found myself in a position where I could bring this project into reality. And so It began; first with a CAD drawing and printed prototype. Then once we confirmed fitment, we produced four units in CNC aluminum. These units are still being used as our "pretty" units for photos and the commercials. We have a foundry that has made the tooling to pour the units in steel or aluminum. The circuit boards have been tooled and are ready to produce in large quantity. The LED flexible circuit boards are here and they are amazing.  Fully integrated circuitry makes them extremely reliable in the conditions they will be facing.

     Our original body CAD Wiring schematic Wiring schematic The circuit board The circuit board Prototyping Prototyping Housing Housing Functioning unit Functioning unit This is our first 3-D render after we decided to add the Window Punch Ribbon This is our first 3-D render after we decided to add the Window Punch Ribbon Our first printed prototype. Our first printed prototype. The original three machined pieces. The original three machined pieces. Our first run of circuit boards Our first run of circuit boards 

FUNDING DIRECTION AND TIMELINE

      All components have been tooled and samples have been produced. We are now ready to begin a full production run. This is where we need your help. When we reach our goal we will be able to produce 1000 units to begin distribution to departments nationwide. If our goals are exceeded, then the money will go directly to production of more units to get them into the hands of the men and women serving us. Regardless of the amount of money raised through this campaign, for every thousand dollars we receive, we will donate 1 unit to a volunteer department in the U.S.

      All the companies we are working with are ready to go into full production and once the goal is achieved and we give the "Go" order it will take approximately 6-8 weeks to have the first thousand units in our hands. We are fully ready logistically to begin shipping and pre-orders have been made by multiple departments. Please give us the helping hand we need. Thank you so much for your support.

REWARDS

Rewards shirts
Rewards shirts

REWARD KEYCHAIN LIGHTS

Risks and challenges

We are now in a position where all of the bugs have been ironed out. The design is finalized and the tooling has been made. The LED's have been chosen and the circuit boards have been tooled. We will be using the funding received here to take those tools into full production. We have tested our manufacturing process with the sample units and have not had any issues. We are confident that if any occur, our production partners are capable of maintaining high quality and timely deliveries. By keeping all of the production and engineering within central Texas, I will be able to maintain close supervision over the entire process.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Anything helps. We greatly appreciate your donation! All donators will have their name printed on the donations board. We will post this information on the website and the Facebook page.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Think we are doing something great? Skip that morning coffee for one day and support our American fire fighters. You will also receive a sticker showing your support. Firefighters everywhere will thank you.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    For this donation level you get a FIRE Lights keychain. Its a small version of the firelight to help you see when you find yourself in a dark situation.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    At this donation level you get one of our "I helped firefighters" shirts. High quality men's T-Shirt or a women's burnout V-neck. These shirts are awesome and you definitely need one!

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    Pledge $70 or more About $70

    Recieve a FIRE Light that you can donate to the fire station of your choice or have us send it directly to them. Also have your name engraved into the light so the firefighters will always remember who is looking out for them.
    If you are a firefighter let us know the unit that it is going on and we will engrave that.
    E-11, L-17, P-3 etc.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    This is by far the best tier. You will get an engraved light to donate, a shirt to show your support and a keychain light to find your way in the dark. Amazing? Yes!

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    At this donation level you will recieve up to 5 engraved lights to donate to the station of your choice. We can send them to you so you can hand deliver or we can deal directly with the station. You will also recieve a tshirt.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    I will personally hand deliver up to 5 engraved units to the station of your choice and install the units on their ladders. (Within the U.S)

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    We will fly you into Austin and take you on a ride-along with the Hutto Fire Department. We will have lunch at the station and go on calls with the guys and girls. While we are there I will teach you how the units work and how to install them. Then you can take them to the station of your choice and teach them.

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Funding period

- (30 days)